Google is proposing a vision for a new campus that completely reinvents the concept of office space. Today the company submitted a master plan for the development of Mountain View's Bayshore District and the construction of its new headquarters to city officials. According to the Silicon Valley Business Journal, which was given an advance look at the plans, Google intends to construct four transformable structures draped in glass canopies on land it already owns in North Bayshore, an office park neighborhood sitting around Highway 101 and the San Francisco Bay. Walls, floors, and ceilings inside the structures would all attach to steel frames but would be movable, allowing workspaces to change size and shape easily and regularly as needed. Starchitects Bjarke Ingels of BIG and Thomas Heatherwick of Heatherwick Studios have joined forces to lead the design of the headquarters.
In addition to the four innovative structures, Google's master plan imagines a campus filled with nature and open in some sections to the public. Walking trails, plazas, and community gardens would sit among natural wetlands and oak woodlands. At least one Google building would be open to the public to walk through as part of a pedestrian trail. The plan would completely reengineer the area, adding 2.5 million square feet of net new office space, enough for more than 12,000 new workers.
The futuristic buildings that Google has proposed are unlike anything that currently exists in office space or construction. Small cranes and robotic machines would be on hand to move walls and other building pieces around whenever needed. The glass canopies overhead would generate electricity. The goal is flexibility, which, as the Silicon Valley Business Journal notes, is important for a company where business units can spring up or disband overnight. Google is aiming for the first structure, called the Landing, to be complete by 2020. (It would replace what is now an 18-acre office park.) The entire campus would be complete by 2024 if everything goes as planned. However, Google must first gain approvals from the City of Mountain View to reinvent both a swath of land within the city and the concept of office space.
· Google Campus Would Explode the Concept of Buildings, Workspace [Silicon Valley Business Journal]
· Google Enlists Bjarke Ingels and Thomas Heatherwick to Create a 'Series of Canopylike Buildings' for New HQ [Curbed National]